“It is very minimal,” says van Haaften-Schick. “It really does exist just as a display of letters on the wall, really straightforward; it requires people to read.”
While she talks about high-profile international events — such as the Whitney Biennial 2014 (the artists “felt that they encountered institutional racism”), the 19th Biennale of Sydney (“the main supporter [was] an Australian corporation that runs prisons for undocumented immigrants”) and Manifesta 10 (“the artists ended up boycotting because of the anti-LGBT laws” in Russia) — the Houston show will focus on local incidents.
“[The letters] deal with artists not getting paid, or situations where artists were asked to pay to show their work, or some kind of labor injustice by the artists.
“For me, it’s really not about publicly shaming organizations or pointing fingers,” says van Haaften-Schick. “It’s just really important to make these issues public, but make public the sheer fact that artists do say no, and do have control of the kinds of places they exhibit, or the kinds of dealers they show with, or the kinds of funding that they take.”
9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays to Fridays; noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays. Through January 11. 1953 Montrose. For information, call 713-523-9530 or visit artleaguehouston.org. Free.
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